Terry Reid has experienced a real rollercoaster ride during Ronray Spirit’s journey to Saturday night’s Golden Easter Egg Final.
It initially appeared Ronray Spirit wouldn’t fire a shot in anger in NSW’s richest race when he was drawn as a reserve for the Easter Egg heats, much to Yuroke-based Terry Reid’s disappointment.
However the Group 2 Warragul Cup hero took advantage of a late call-up to clock a sizzling 29.65sec at his Wentworth Park debut.
But the time had barely been semaphored before Reid feared the worst when Ronray Spirit, a son of 2010 Golden Easter Egg winner Cosmic Rumble, was kayoed in the catching pen.
“He was knocked out and ended up with a black eye,” explained Reid, son of GRV Hall of Fame member Peter.
“His eye was shut until Tuesday but luckily there was no bone damage and I kept the swelling down with frozen peas. The vegetables were good for him too!
“Three reserves have actually made it through to the final because Andrea Dailly’s dog (Dyna Nico) won its semi-final after it was first reserve and Zipping Midge got into the field when Hostile unfortunately broke down after its semi.”
Having taken no serious harm from his post-heat mishap, Ronray Spirit then overcame a torrid run in last Saturday’s semi-final to finish second to Dyna Double One – albeit 10 lengths in arrears.
While delighted to earn a crack at the $250,000 winner’s purse, Reid concedes Ronray Spirit faces a daunting task in Saturday’s hugely anticipated Golden Easter Egg finale after drawing box seven, inside Andrea Dailly’s flying favourite Fernando Bale.
“You’re always hoping but I haven’t prepared a speech!” Reid quipped.
“He was beaten a long way in his semi-final but I reckon his run was really good. He was turned sideways and then he was back in the pack and was entitled to drop out but he just kept pushing.
“I’m not happy with box seven, especially with Fernando Bale being so quick out. But in saying that, Recruitment, which has box six, also cuts left and it isn’t a bad beginner either so it might give him some room.
“I think the one to beat is the red (Dawkins Bale). I’ve raced against it a couple of times with Ronray Spirit’s sister Lady Ronray and box one is always a big advantage. The bookends – one and eight – will definitely be the hardest to beat.
“It would be great if Ronray Spirit could finish in the money but I’m just happy to be there. It’s not easy to get into these big races, especially when you only have three or four dogs, so I’ll just go up there and enjoy the night and whatever happens will happen!”
GROUP 1 GOLDEN EASTER EGG
Saturday night 4 April – Wentworth Park – 520m
1. DAWKINS BALE (Jenny Hunt, Vic)
2. ZIPPING MIDGE (Jason Mackay, NSW)
3. OVER LIMIT (Paul Stuart, WA)
4. DYNA DOUBLE ONE (Andrea Dailly, Vic)
5. DYNA NICO (Andrea Dailly, Vic)
6. RECRUITMENT (Deborah Coleman (Vic)
7. RONRAY SPIRIT (Terry Reid, Vic)
8. FERNANDO BALE (Andrea Dailly, Vic)
9. SPACECRAFT (Lorraine Atchison, NSW)
10. ZIPPING ABBY (Ronald Seymour, NSW)
Golden Easter Egg Semi-Final Replays
Wentworth Park Formguide